Curve Strip Quilt Patterns – Project Case Study Part 1

All of those curving parts are patiently waiting for me to work up the nerve to start putting them together as they sit on the flannel wall in front of me.

On a Friday night, it all started off in this manner. If Ricky was able to accomplish it, then so could I.

Starting with the block that I thought would be the easiest to construct, I took two of the curved pieces and positioned them so that the right sides were facing each other.

As you can see, the edges of these pieces do not line up at all, and I will need to adjust the fabric as I sew.

When I got it to the machine, it was easier than I thought it would be.

Without using any pins, I lined up the ends of the strips. They looked very much like sewing two triangles together in that there were little dog-ears sticking out.

Unlike Ricky, I sewed rather slowly, adjusting the fabric every inch or so. I kept the bottom fabric flat, curving it as necessary so it went through the needle straight.

The top fabric was adjusted often, and frequently it had little bubbles in it as it curved around to match the edge of the bottom fabric. The key was in keeping the edge flat so that I didn’t stitch any puckers or pleats into the seam.

If only the color in this picture were better….however, you may be able to see the little tunnel in the fabric as it was curved to line up with the bottom fabric.

Once the first seam was stitched, I removed the strips from my machine and took them over to the ironing board to press.

Ricky believes in ironing fabric, not that wimpy pressing. So, I ironed the seam allowance to one side. In this case, it was the strip fabric, since it is a solid piece of fabric, not pieced.

One of my rules about pressing seam allowances is to avoid pressing seam allowances to a side where there are a bunch of pieced patches, when I can press the seams to a side where there is just a strip of fabric.

Once those strips were ironed, I returned the section to the flannel wall. The second pair of strips was removed and taken to the sewing machine to sew together.

After experiencing success with the first seam, the second pair was much easier to sew.

I used the same technique — holding the bottom fabric flat while adjusting the top fabric as necessary to make the curves.

Once the second seam was done, I carried it back to the flannel wall to enjoy. And the last seam was easiest of all. Using the same process, I stitched the center seam to create the finished block.

Observations —

• The finished block is no longer square. Stephanie observed at one point that since there are different numbers of patches in these blocks, that they will be different sizes. We have not addressed that issue yet.

• Although the striped pieces are shorter than the blue and green pieces, this has nothing to do with the sewing. As I compared them to the other block that was cut the same, I saw that for some reason the striped fabric is just shorter. Stephanie is out of town now, so she’ll be surprised when she returns — or maybe not. (She may have figured that out days ago. Or, maybe she cut it that way.)

• The pieced blocks (the 9 patch blocks in this quilt) do change shape somewhat because of the seam allowances being removed. It will be interesting to see some of the other blocks that are cut into the pieced blocks in different shapes.

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